Four. That’s the number of winning seasons in the entire 26-year history of the Blackburn softball program. 14. The total numbers of wins in the past three seasons.
As he enters his second season as head softball coach, Kerry Crum knows the numbers don’t look great, but he has been in a similar position before as coach at Southeast High School and Benedictine University. At Benedictine he put together a national championship contending team before the school closed their doors in 2015. Here, he plans to do the same and begin a winning tradition.
Prior to his hiring as Blackburn softball coach, a single coach split time as head volleyball and head softball coach and the recruiting for both teams suffered as a result. Krum plans to change that. This past summer he traveled to four different states, attended almost 200 games and watched approximately 1,000 players. The evidence of his hard work is 12 freshmen and four junior college transfers recruited to help the four returners from last year.
Returning junior Hannah Goett is entering her third season as a part of the softball team and she described last year as “a very long season, that seemed to drain everyone.” Despite the struggles through a three-win season with only 12 players, Goett is optimistic for the upcoming year. “With only four returning players, there are a lot of new girls so I am excited to see how we all play together. I am looking forward to meeting and getting to play alongside [them]. I believe that we have a lot of potential to work really well together. I think we should have a decent season this year; I am wanting to better our record compared to the last two years.” (sic)
Crum echoed Goett’s feelings and believes the approaching season will be exciting and serve as the stepping stones for future success. When he accepted the job, he knew the hard work that lay ahead, but he was intrigued by both the school and the opportunity to turn the program around and make it into something truly special.
With all of the reconstruction, the hopes are high for Blackburn softball as they will begin their first steps towards the future of the program when the season begins in March.
*The writer is a member of the softball team.